Mimolette will never be queen of the prom. It is content to be a runner-up to the ever more loved Parmesan who, you just know, will win the popular vote. Still, it takes pride in the honor of being nominated. It shows that sweet Mimolette did something right to get there.
The thing is you can't compare Mimolette to Parmesan as so many are wont to do. Often people pass it off as an cadmium-colored copy that looks more like a stunted cantaloupe than a good cheese. I can't lie to you, when you compare it to Parmesan it's no match in the creamy and nutty departments. No contest.
But that's the thing; Mimiolette isn't Parmesan. It's Mimolette, a traditional French cheese that most often originates from the city of Lille. You have to judge it on its own merits.
The bright orange color comes from the addition of annatto giving the cheese spicy notes reminiscent of nutmeg and pepper. The flavor becomes bolder and evolves with age by sweetly adopting hazelnut flavors. Oily, strong, and salty it gains respect for what is it. A cheese with flash and bang. Who cares if Mimolette isn't prom queen on prom night? She leaves the room standing tall, and as time goes by she garners admiration by her own merits.
The moonscape rind, one of its most distinguishing and charming features, is actually caused by cheese mites. Intentionally added as they aerate the cheese and help it develop it's robust savory flavor. How many cheeses can boast that?
Mimolette is a strong-arm flavor that can make any mac-n-cheese dish become a savory bomb to unsuspecting diners. Furthermore, it's a cheese that has the ability to match up perfectly with hoppy, amber colored beers.
So give Mimolette a hand, take her for a twirl, you may just end up voting for the underdog in this race.